Garage Conversion: Week 2

Less than a week into demolition, we’ve already uncovered our first big “surprise” – the plumbing. We’re not completely blindsighted though. When we bought the house, we knew that the plumbing and electrical were extremely outdated. On top of that, the lack of maintenance over the years has led to overgrown tree roots infesting the pipelines. In simplest terms, we’ll need to introduce a new sewage line for the kitchen, laundry room, and garage conversion/ADU.

Like I said above, the root of the problem originated from the enormous ficus tree that used to be in the front yard. This was also the very first thing we removed as soon as we closed escrow on the house.


However, the root infestation damage had already been done. Years of neglect meant that the roots were growing uncontrollably underground. When they dug to expose the sewer pipelines, they also realized that the pipes were old and even had a small crack where water was pooling. This meant that the roots had a constant source of water to continue growing into spider web-like tendrils.

Our contractor and his plumber were also able to make informed judgments about the work that’s been done on the house over the years. In short, there are two sewage lines that connect to the main sewage line: one that connects the kitchen and the other that connects the bathrooms. We hired a plumber last year to clear the bathroom lines, and the plumber yesterday was able to run his scope clearly through it (no root infestation there, yay!).

We’re actually pretty happy that we’re discovering all of this now (instead of after re-doing the landscaping or driveway and then needing to go back and rip it out ). The new plumbing work is expected to set us back by one week during which we are advised not to use the kitchen sinks or dishwasher. Ah, the joys of home ownership.